Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Leg 39, from Shipwreck Cove and on to round Calderwood Point.

Calderwood Point is the northernmost of Calderwood Neck's numerous peninsulas. It's nearly an island unto itself but the isthmus that allows it to cling to the rest of the Neck at Clam and Shipwreck Coves is always dry, if just barely. Long ago someone exercised further division and imposed some confusion by naming the Point's westernmost finger Zeke's Point and the northern protrusion Birch Point.
At Zeke's Point I came to that place where Vinalhaven and North Haven, at Iron Point, are in closest proximity.

Here, in Birch Cove, where Zeke's transitions to Calderwood Point, is an unusually designed summer home belonging to folks who've become very good friends. Over the last twenty years or so I've re-built nearly all of it and added a guest house.
The granite piers for the steam boat wharf, built in the late 1800's to accommodate the Governor Bodwell as it made its way back and forth through the Thorofare to and from Boston and Bar Harbor, still stand just offshore from the summer residence that occupies the northern most tip of Birch Point and thus, practically speaking, although Calderwood Neck is actually a seperate island, the northernmost tip of Vinalhaven.

Rounding the point I had my last look at North Haven village and my first of the Eastern Thorofare, its guardian Goose Rock Lighthouse and, in the distance, Stonington. Just behind the lighthous is Stimpson's Island where I and my crew spent nearly two years engaged in rebuilding several residences back in the 70's.

It being connected at low tide, I walked around Birch Island stopping to take in Widow's Island, where I'd doen some work restoring the old residence there years ago. The island had once housed a sanitorium for folks suffering from smallpox.

This vacant spot was the birthplace of my wife Elaine's waterfront studio. We own a tiny sliver of land on the shore of Sand's Cove. When the owner of a sweet little building that had stood on this spot complained of its suffering year after year at the hands of folks who, during the off season, used it a little roughly, he offered it to me if I could move it. I had some friends with a barge mounted crane pluck it off the shore around 1990 and bring it down to Vinalhaven. During the long ride they set up a little bar inside, had a little string quartet playing all the while and rounded Norton's Point into Carver's Harbor on the 4th of July to the tune of 'Ain't Gonna Need This House No Longer' and in a markedly merry frame of mind. The next day they lifted it into position three feet from the edge of our wharf and it remains Elaine's createive workspace and refuge to this day.

Next leg, from this northernmost spot back to Clam Cove.

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